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Unity Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:UNTY) Looks Interesting, And It's About To Pay A Dividend

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Unity Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:UNTY) is about to trade ex-dividend in the next 2 days. You can purchase shares before the 12th of March in order to receive the dividend, which the company will pay on the 27th of March.

Unity Bancorp's next dividend payment will be US$0.08 per share, on the back of last year when the company paid a total of US$0.32 to shareholders. Looking at the last 12 months of distributions, Unity Bancorp has a trailing yield of approximately 2.0% on its current stock price of $16.41. Dividends are an important source of income to many shareholders, but the health of the business is crucial to maintaining those dividends. So we need to investigate whether Unity Bancorp can afford its dividend, and if the dividend could grow.

See our latest analysis for Unity Bancorp

Dividends are usually paid out of company profits, so if a company pays out more than it earned then its dividend is usually at greater risk of being cut. Unity Bancorp has a low and conservative payout ratio of just 14% of its income after tax.

Companies that pay out less in dividends than they earn in profits generally have more sustainable dividends. The lower the payout ratio, the more wiggle room the business has before it could be forced to cut the dividend.

Click here to see the company's payout ratio, plus analyst estimates of its future dividends.

NasdaqGM:UNTY Historical Dividend Yield, March 9th 2020
NasdaqGM:UNTY Historical Dividend Yield, March 9th 2020

Have Earnings And Dividends Been Growing?

Companies with consistently growing earnings per share generally make the best dividend stocks, as they usually find it easier to grow dividends per share. If earnings fall far enough, the company could be forced to cut its dividend. It's encouraging to see Unity Bancorp has grown its earnings rapidly, up 24% a year for the past five years.

The main way most investors will assess a company's dividend prospects is by checking the historical rate of dividend growth. In the last seven years, Unity Bancorp has lifted its dividend by approximately 36% a year on average. It's great to see earnings per share growing rapidly over several years, and dividends per share growing right along with it.

The Bottom Line

Is Unity Bancorp worth buying for its dividend? When companies are growing rapidly and retaining a majority of the profits within the business, it's usually a sign that reinvesting earnings creates more value than paying dividends to shareholders. This is one of the most attractive investment combinations under this analysis, as it can create substantial value for investors over the long run. Overall, Unity Bancorp looks like a promising dividend stock in this analysis, and we think it would be worth investigating further.

With that in mind, a critical part of thorough stock research is being aware of any risks that stock currently faces. For example, we've found 2 warning signs for Unity Bancorp that we recommend you consider before investing in the business.

We wouldn't recommend just buying the first dividend stock you see, though. Here's a list of interesting dividend stocks with a greater than 2% yield and an upcoming dividend.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.